- Staff Reporter
- Victoria Miller leads a group of experienced seniors into 2019-20 season. Photo Credit: Chris Reich, NSU Photographic Services
NATCHITOCHES – Highs and lows. Ups and downs. That was the consensus from Northwestern State women’s basketball coach Jordan Dupuy after the first full week of practice.
Not an unexpected summation for the Lady Demons with eight new players on the roster, including four first-year freshmen all learning a new system.
“When it comes to the things we talk about being inconsistent, they’re effort and communication,” Dupuy said. “I think a lot of that is because it’s so new to the newcomers.
“We’ve had great senior leadership and I like the makeup of our team. The thing we have to get better with is just carrying over from drill to drill. I think as time goes by this team is really going to gel, because we have good chemistry off the floor and that usually will carry over on the floor.”
Although the Lady Demons return just one starter from a year ago, senior Victoria Miller, three other seniors have plenty of starts and minutes under their belts from two years ago.
Gabby Bell, Jasmyn Johnson and Jocelyn Scott combined to make 64 starts during the 2017-18 season. Dupuy has leaned on those four, along with second-year junior college transfer Kira Bonner, to shepherd the new players into the system.
“They know how I do things, the terminology, what I’m thinking and how I’m feeling right when I walk on to the floor,” Dupuy said. “So they’re able to kind of do a lot of the coaching on their own.
“I told them in our first team meeting the more team led we are, the more that comes from player to player, the better we’re going to be. I think they’ve really taken that to heart and done a good job. The thing that has to get a little better is receiving the information from the ones that haven’t been here. As that improves, our entire team will improve.”
Through one week of official work, the Lady Demons already have goals for the season that Dupuy believes will put them in the best position to be successful this year. The continued implementation of speed and aggressive play, especially for the newcomers, remains the focus as they transition into their second week.
“We want to play at a high pace, play a lot of people and create a lot of chaos,” Dupuy said. “If you want to do that during a game you’ve got to create that during practice. We’re flying from drill to drill and so we want to make sure we maintain that in our scrimmage segments.
“Maintain that level of intensity, that level of tempo, and that is going to sustain us. We’re creating that mentality now. Being third in the country last year in forced turnovers, and not really having the speed and athleticism I think we have this year, hopefully we can look at being number one in the country. That’s our plan.”
The Northwestern State open the regular season with LeTourneau on Tuesday, November 5, at Prather Coliseum.
Stay connected to NSU women’s basketball by following @NSUDemonsWBB on Twitter, @NSULadyDemons on Instagram, and Northwestern State Lady Demon Basketball on Facebook.
Article sourced from provided press release.